An awe-inspiring, often hilarious, and unerringly honest story of one mother's exercise in extreme parenting, revealing the rewards - and the costs - of raising her children the Chinese way.
All decent parents want to do what's best for their children. What Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother reveals is that the Chinese just have a totally different idea of how to do that. Western parents try to respect their children's individuality, encouraging them to pursue their true passions and providing a nurturing environment. The Chinese believe that the best way to protect your children is by preparing them for the future and arming them with skills, strong work habits, and inner confidence. Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother chronicles Chua's iron-willed decision to raise her daughters, Sophia and Lulu, her way - the Chinese way - and the remarkable results her choice inspires.
The truth is Lulu and Sophia would never have had time for a playdate. They were too busy practicing their instruments (two to three hours a day and double sessions on the weekend) and perfecting their Mandarin. Of course no one is perfect, including Chua herself. Witness this scene: "According to Sophia, here are three things I actually said to her at the piano as I supervised her practicing: 1. Oh my God, you're just getting worse and worse. 2. I'm going to count to three, then I want musicality. 3. If the next time's not PERFECT, I'm going to take all your stuffed animals and burn them!"
But Chua demands as much of herself as she does of her daughters. And in her sacrifices - the exacting attention spent studying her daughters' performances, the office hours lost shuttling the girls to lessons - the depth of her love for her children becomes clear.
Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother is an eye-opening exploration of the differences in Eastern and Western parenting - and the lessons parents and children everywhere teach one another.
©2010 Amy Chua (P)2011 Penguin Audio
how to parent and how not to parent. I didn't like her parenting style for the most part but some things were quite useful. it helped me think of parenting in a new light.
Nope. This woman deserves to be spanked for her arrogance. It is one extended boast.
No - loved Bringing Up Bebe
No - I can't believe the supercilious tone. Made me want to slap her.
It's too much about her daughters' musical careers, and not enough about mothering. And it completely lacks self-awareness. She comes off as an ass.
This woman scares me. And she bores me too.
I hated this book when I started it - Chua is presumptuous, self absorbed, and brutal with her children. She looks down on Western culture, brags unflinchingly about herself, and is opinionated beyond belief.
But then there are the results of her actions.
She herself is an accomplished academic. Her daughters, who are key to the story, are superior musicians. She's a published author, for cryin' out loud. But at what price? Driving her children to practice repetitively with blatant, negative criticism probably doesn't do much for their egos. But the results are uncontested, and the validity of Chua's key Methodology is clear:
1. Make your children practice to be excellent.
2. By being excellent they will gain recognition.
This is wrapped up in the assumption that a child does NOT know what is best for his/her own development...a parent must choose that path for the child.
The first step is always the hardest. As the father of 3 children, I completely agree that most parents (not just Western ones) lose the battle here. However, I'm not sure Chua's method of derisive criticism and aggressive bullying is the best way to win the battle...and she herself admits that it didn't work with her second daughter.
It IS important to make children realize that although they may be hard-headed, WE as parents are more hard-headed than they are...and we have a LOT more experience in what works. The way to do that...is up to you.
Sure glad she wasn't my mother! It helped me understand the chinese mother but at time I felt suffocated by her.
Amy is this really you?
Abuse Narcassism Education
I appreciate that the parents did care about giving a Music Education to their two young girls. I am a seasoned, 40 years as a private piano teacher so I have dealt with and continue to deal with all types of parents; great to horrible.
When Chua, the author was dealing with her defiant 5 year old and made her go outside to a freezing porch in the middle of the winter in Boston. This experience solidified was a mean, narcassistic mother Mrs. Chua was. If I had been the teacher, I would have social services and had both girls removed from the home.
When parents abuse their kids in order to vacariously force them to have what they did not have as children, sometimes parents loose their ability to make clear judgement calls; their egos as parents are totally out of line - regardless of culture.
Children need to laugh, play and be children. Some light exposure to the arts is fine but there needs to be a balance when parents can coddle the talent along in an effective manner without being abusive and condescending.
Otherwise, as is with the case of so many children, they will end up either committing suicide as they get older and or being in long term therapy with counselors trying to deal with their outrage and anger.
I was outraged at how controlling and manipulative this Mrs. Chua was towards her children and then has the audacity to use her limited life experience to blame her abuse on her culture and then in turn, tries to exploit her experience into a marketing campaign to sell books, blaming her abuse on her cultural upbringing, that being Chinese.
I went on line and pulled up this book an Amazon.com
Here is what I found;
Original Used discounted new used copy
$25.95 $16.97 $7.76 $5.00
I guess Mrs. Chua intention to make a fortune of her kids misfortuned bombed royally even with TV and Radio interviews.
Karma as an awful bite at times....
Insightful, interesting, and intimidating.
I enjoyed having the author read the book, it brought a lot of authenticity to the story. It also made me believe the unbelievable parts.
I'm going to proudly be a Western mother of Asian descent, but I might sign my kid up for a music class.
I enjoyed this perspective of parenting. It gave me a little bit to aspire to and a lot to let go.
Yes I'd recommend for another point of view. Ms. Chua's approach is perhaps not for everyone, but the book offers some unique reflections on how to train your children.
More yet to be written. Ripe for a follow up that can reflect on the results of parenting "the Chinese way".
Calm, deliberate, cool
I may not listen to it again, but I'm very glad I heard her thoughts on parenting - what she did, what mistakes she made, and how it all turned out.
Her daughters were really the stars of the book.
I felt her voice was a huge part of hearing her story and I likely have more insight on what happened between the members of her family due to the opportunity to hear the inflection in her voice.
When lulu was outside in the cold, so stubborn!
Some of the story was quite shocking, my mouth open while riding in my car and listening. I also enjoyed hearing about the growth and changes she's made over the years.
Amy Chua did nothing to make us like her, and very often I wanted to ring her neck. At the same time I wish I'd had a parent that was so dedicated to my learning to be that involved. I learned a lot from the book, not just about being an "Asian parent" but also about how much dedication and perseverance it takes to become proficient.
An avid reader, demanding of the story, characters and narrator. Mysteries and historical fiction are my favorites.
I liked this book very much, especially because I have 2 American-raised teenagers who regularly tell me I am too strict. NEVER AGAIN will you hear those words with the same understanding after reading about Amy Chua's traditional Chinese approach to child rearing. A quick read.
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